The Norman Transcript

State/Region

April 19, 2013

OKC bombing survivors to reunite

OKLAHOMA CITY — The anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing always conjures up dreadful memories for survivor Beverly Rankin, and this year will be even more somber as she and others devastated by that attack look to also honor victims of the Boston Marathon explosions.

“It never ends. There are just so many sick people out there,” Rankin said Thursday, a day before the 18th anniversary of the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. “What kind of a thrill can they get from hurting people and killing people?”

The Oklahoma City bombing killed 168 people and injured hundreds more on April 19, 1995. Although it happened years before and more than 1,500 miles away from Monday’s bombing in Boston that killed three and injured more than 180, there are similarities, said a retired psychologist who was among those hurt in the building attack.

“They are similar in that innocent people were victimized in order to make a statement,” said Dr. Paul Heath, who formerly worked for the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs. “It’s really, really sad that it happened in Boston. It bothers me.”

Today’s ceremony remembering the Oklahoma City bombing will be held near the former site of the federal building that now houses the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum, which honors bombing victims, survivors and rescue workers and details the effects of violence.

The Oklahoma City federal building was destroyed when a truck containing more than 4,000 pounds of ammonium nitrate fertilizer and fuel oil was detonated in front of it. The bombing remains the worst domestic terror attack in U.S. history.

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